by KEVIN THOMPSON
LAKIN — Home was not so sweet for the Lakin Lady Broncs, as they fell to Sublette 43-37 Tuesday night in Hi-Plains League action.
But for those who left after the third period and came back later, they would have been surprised at the Lakin comeback that fell just short.
Trailing 39-24 at the end of three quarters, the Broncs took advantage of a cautious Lady Lark offense, created some turnovers, and played a lot of the quarter from the free throw line.
Lakin went on a 9-0 run over the first seven minutes of the fourth to close to within six. During that stretch, they made only one field goal but converted 7-of-9 from the line.
Alex Martinez fed Darrie Rogers for an easy layup and Kara Simmons' two free throws got the Broncs to within four, but it was too late.
A quick start helped the Larks to an early lead, as they nailed four 3-pointers in the first quarter, three by freshman Brooke Briggs.
The Larks held Lakin to just one field goal on four attempts in the second period to build a comfortable 28-17 halftime lead, which turned to a 15-point margin after the third.
The first three quarters went well for Sublette, coach Monty Marlin said. The fourth quarter exposed the youth and inexperience of his team.
"When we saw we had that kind of lead at the end of the third quarter, I told the girls to just continue what we'd been doing for the first four minutes," he said.
At the four-minute mark, the plan was to pull the ball out and slow down the game.
"But all of a sudden, nothing went right. On the defensive end, we started fouling when we didn't need to, and they were scoring points with no clock running off," he said. "And we were stuck on 39 for a day and half."
Actually, it was six minutes, but it was enough to allow Lakin to make its surge.
"We're playing a lot of young girls (his varsity has just one senior and seven freshmen), but they're learning by playing," Marlin said. "I was really pleased with a couple of them who came off the bench and contributed."
Briggs hasn't shot the ball well yet, but in this game, she came up big with her trio of 3's in the opening period, and that's what he is looking for out of his freshman, he said.
With the tallest varsity girl at 5-8, Marlin said the Larks are going to have to play bigger than they are, and a Kate Barajas provided that inside against Lakin.
But Sublette (2-3) has the quickness to improve on its press and play solid man-to-man defense, which it went to against Lakin after zone attempts allowed too many easy looks for the Broncs, Marlin said.
Holding Lakin's Darrie Rogers to just 10 points and only three field goals paid dividends as a result, Marlin added.
Briggs and Riley Matteson led the Larks with 10 points each.
The Larks shot 15-of-33 from the floor but were 0-of-5 in the final quarter.
For Lakin (1-4), the first half was not a good Lady Bronc effort, coach Shawn Michaelis said.
"It took clear to the fourth quarter to start playing, and winning one quarter doesn't win you many games," he said. "When you dig that hole early and don't work defensively, you put yourself in a hole that's hard to dig out."
Giving up 43 points is not bad, Michaelis added, but on the offensive end, he said his team just isn't getting it done. The Broncs shot just 11-of-38 from the field and missed eight free throws.
It's all about effort on both ends for four quarters, he said. The Broncs get a crack at Meade on Friday, and Michaelis knows it's going to take consistent effort to take on the Lady Buffaloes for 32 minutes.
Sublette looks to continue its winning ways Friday when the Lady Larks host Satanta.
Sublette 16 12 11 4 -- 43
Lakin 10 7 7 13 -- 37
Sublette (43) — Watson 2 0-2 5, Matteson 2 6-8 10, Briggs 2 1-2 10, Gonzalez 3 0-1 6, Martin 1 0-0 2, Cooley 0 2-2 2, Whaler 3 0-0 6. Totals 14 9-15 43.
Lakin (37) — Sanchez 0 1-2 1, Davidson 1 4-4 6, Haney 1 0-0 2, Simmons 2 4-6 8, Rogers 3 4-9 10, Watkins 2 0-0 4, Reed 2 2-2 6. Totals 11 15-23 37.
3-point goals--Sublette 4 (Watson, Briggs 3), Lakin 0. Fouled out--Sublette (Martin).